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Top 5 Must-see Attractions in Saigon

Ho Chi Minh is a fascinating place and everywhere you look are little nooks and crannies.

Tim Doling

It is true that Saigon is the unique cultural-historical center in Vietnam with hundreds of famous attractions, but according to historian Doling, there is more to discover, like a fabled connecting tunnel between the two. Hence, take our Saigon tours to explore top 5 must-see attractions in Saigon.

1.War Remnants Museum

  • 28 Vo Van Tan, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City
  • 15.000 vnd/ticket
  • Daily from 07.30 - 12.00 and 13:30 – 17:00

The War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City, known as the “Museum of American War Crimes”, first opened to the public in 1975. It reminds visitors of the long and brutal Vietnam War. Outside of the museum are many displays of tanks, military weapons and vehicles, including a helicopter with rocket launchers, a tank, a fighter plane, a single-seat attack aircraft and a 6,800kg conventional bomb. Inside then are actually mostly the exhibitions of photography showing the horrible events and the terrible violence. The museum not only displays a phase of painful history, but it also tells hidden stories about war to people, especially to Westerners.

Attractions in Saigon
War Remnants Museum

2. Notre Dame Cathedral

Attractions in Saigon
Notre Dame Cathedral
  • 1 Cong Xa Paris, Ben Nghe, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
  • Free
  • Daily from 8:00 – 11:00 and 13:00 – 18:00

Located in the middle of downtown Ho Chi Minh City, Notre Dame Cathedral is the symbol of Saigon. It is well-known for the prominent architecture which has contained distinctive neo-Romanesque features. Those are the red brick façade (which were imported from Marseille), stained glass windows and two bell towers. Interestingly, these bell towers contain six bronze bells that still ring up to now. A total cost of building the Cathedral in 1880 was about 2.5 million France.

Furthermore, Notre Dame Cathedral is the most marvelous and important church in Saigon. Visitors reported seeing tears flow from the eyes of a statue of the Virgin Mary here in 2005. Thus, that has made it a destination for Catholics on religious pilgrimage. It is also the pride of people living here. The best time to visit is Sundays at 9:30am.

3. Independence Palace

  • 135 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia, Ben Thanh, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
  • 30.000 vnd/ticket
  • Daily 07:30 - 11:00 & 13:00 - 16:00

The Independence Palace (also officially known as Reunification Palace) is right in the heart of Saigon. The Place is the symbol of Vietnam’s history, peace and territorial integrity. Its name attached to global history when in 1975 a tank belonging to the North Vietnamese Army crashed through its main gate. Therefore, this is a marked end to the Vietnam War. This image is one of the most famous pictures depicting the Independence Palace which has seen a vivid history. Also, it used to be the base of the US-backed Vietnamese General Ngo Dinh Diem during the Vietnam War, until his assassination in 1963.

 

Attractions in Saigon
Independence Palace

This is one of the most important landmarks. Originally, the site of the Nordom Palace was also the Governor’s Palace. Its first role was as a home and workplace for the French Governor of Cochinchina. Now, it has been turned into a museum although it is still used for government meetings and events. The Palace has the characteristics of Vietnamese Feng Shui architecture like garden layout or a blend of traditional ritual and modern architecture. Wandering around its rooms, there are numerous important moments reminding of the past of Vietnam, especially the war command room with its huge maps and old communication equipment, as well as the basement labyrinth.

4. Ben Thanh Market

Attractions in Saigon
Ben Thanh Market
  • Le Loi, Ben Thanh, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
  • Free
  • 6:00 – 18:00 daily for the indoor market, and about 18:00 – Midnight daily for the night market

There is no visit to Saigon considered completely if visitors do not come to Ben Thanh Market- the bustling market of Saigon. It is in the list of famous attractions in Saigon not to be missed when you visit the over 300-year-old city. The French built it in 1870. Initially, the market was called Les Halles Centrales before being renamed Ben Thanh in 1912.  Ben Thanh Market is one of the oldest markets and well-known attractions in Saigon. It is famous for a great place to buy local handicrafts, branded goods, Vietnamese art and other souvenirs.

Moreover, it is also the ideal place to enjoy traditional Vietnamese dishes. For those who are curious about Vietnamese cuisine, stop by food stalls with local specialties and sip some iced tea. That is the way to explore Saigonese style of eating local food. Especially, bargaining is an interesting experience when you go shopping in Vietnam. Prices here can be high, so do not be afraid to haggle.

5. Cu Chi Tunnels

  • 70km northwest of Ho Chi Minh City
  • Daily

Cu Chi Tunnels is a revolutionary relic of Vietnam attracting the attention of the whole world to a resilient country. Its location is in Cu Chi district, about 70km Northwest of Ho Chi Minh City. This is a unique architecture including infirmaries, kitchens, storage rooms, underground systems with a total length of 250km.

Tunnels are also places of living, meeting and fighting of soldiers in the The Resistance War against America. In 2015, the historical site received the Hero of Labor title. Over the last 20 years, this relic has been appealing to more than 20 million domestic and foreign visitors.

Attractions in Saigon
Cu Chi Tunnels

If you are curious about the history and culture of Vietnam, those attractions in Saigon will offer full answers to your curiosity. Hopefully, the above information would be useful in providing you with an overview of  attractions in Saigon– the most dynamic city of Vietnam. For further information, please visit our I Love Vietnam Tour and experience memorable trips in a safest way.

 

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